Google Plus Business Pages – Early Observations and Predictions
Google, never one to miss a trick has launched its new service on the world of SEO – Google+ Business Pages. The following paragraph about the service is quoted from Google’s blog:
“People search on Google billions of times a day, and very often, they’re looking for businesses and brands. Today’s launch of Google+ Pages can help people transform their queries into meaningful connections, so we’re rolling out two ways to add pages to circles from Google search. The first is by including Google+ pages in search results, and the second is a new feature called Direct Connect.”
Intuitive Interfaces as One Would Expect
If you’ve already created a Google Places page for your business you can link this to Google+ very easily. Simply click on ‘Create Page’ and enter your business phone number so that Google can collect your information and set everything up. However, we’re told that Google actually retrieves this information from the index and not the Google Places page.
Google has rolled out a brand new feature called Direct Connect. This makes it really easy to find and follow their favourite businesses and brands on Google+.
Whenever a web user needs to find a particular brand using Google+, they just type a + symbol in the Google search box followed by the name of the business or brand they wish to follow. Let’s say, you wanted to follow Ford, you would just enter “+Ford” into your Google Search box and away you go. You’ll get a direct link to Ford’s Google+ Page appearing directly below the search box and if you hit enter after typing in “+Ford” you’ll be directed straight to Toyota’s page. Simple, fast and highly effective for everybody concerned.
Move Over Facebook Business Pages?
In the future, Direct Connect will allow users to put a + in front of your company name to be taken directly to your Google Plus Business Page. Whilst this facility is only currently available to a few companies, soon you’ll be able to add a Direct Connect code to the header of your website. According to Hubspot, Google are using a specific algorithm that ascertains which companies are worthy of inclusion. They also advise that we should all be promoting our Google Plus Business Pages on blogs, websites, social media and any other media platforms in order to better influence the Direct Connect algorithm.
It also appears that Google has reduced the number of Facebook pages it is indexing whilst real-time tweets have disappeared altogether from Google search. The plan is for Google to replace Facebook and Twitter on the Google SERPs and to ensure that Google gets the most relevant and current results possible.
However, many SEO companies and individuals are holding back before charging or paying for Google Plus business Page accounts. With the recent pulling of Google Buzz many have decided to adopt a watch and wait approach to ensure that Google Plus has the staying power that Google is predicting.
What You Need to Know About Google Plus Business Pages
• Whilst we’re waiting to hear more, let’s take a look at what you can and cannot do with Google Plus Business Pages.
• Firstly, you should know that you can’t add people to your business page circles unless they have added you to their circle first.
• Google Plus Pages work in a similar way to Facebook Business Pages – pages can be created for different entities whilst profiles can only be created for people.
• If you need to promote more than one product, you can create more than one page and manage them by switching between your Google Plus Business Pages and your personal profile by way of a drop down menu on the home page.
• Whilst Google Plus Business Pages have they +1 button they cannot +1 other content or pages on the web.
• Google Plus Local Business Pages include fields that allow you to find the physical address of the company easily.
• Google Plus, unlike Facebook has no language filter for the posts and comments that people may leave on your wall.
• There are many positive aspects of Google Plus, the most positive being the ability to hold video conversations with multiple users in the hangout. This is great for businesses wanting to communicate with groups of customers and potential customers by holding Q&As, customer service clinics, feedback sessions and product launch announcements.
• With everything that Google has planned for Google Plus, many are predicting that Google Plus may become the platform of choice over Facebook and Twitter when it comes to promoting over a social media channel. Watch this space. We’ll be reporting back once things really get going!